National Minorities and Citizenship Rights in Lithuania, 1988-93 (Studies in Russia and East Europe)

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Its struggle for an independent democratic Lithuania was shaped by the affirmation of Lithuanian national identity. This was interpreted by some Lithuanians, Russians, Poles and Jews not only as against developing their own national identities but also as exclusion from the possibility of exercising citizenship rights which they were given according to the letter of the law. The analysis will be focused on the comprehension of citizenship rights in terms of how citizenship rights were translated into practice and were perceived by its citizens and residents. In other words, citizenship should not only be seen in relation to the state but also at the local level which gives it depth and vitality.

After the Second World War it was argued by the international community, primarily the United Nations, that the rights given to individuals were a sufficient guarantee, so collective rights did not need to be developed. This point has been questioned after by the same international community, starting especially in relation to Bosnia and Herzegovina. Two approaches have been developed by those who have undertaken research on collective rights.

First, collective rights promote disunity as opposed to the common good for all citizens. Second, it is important to withdraw from the larger society to be able to integrate within it. The issue of collective rights was raised in Lithuania especially by the Polish community and ranged from a demand for cultural autonomy to a demand for political autonomy.

Why are citizenship rights important? Citizenship has been a struggle from below.

National Minorities and Citizenship Rights in Lithuania, : Vesna Popovski :

Citizenship is not a static notion, it is a relationship between individuals, social groups, civil society and the state. It can also be seen as an attempt to change the existing power relations. Therefore, it should be interpreted as an important category which provides seeds for a new type of democracy. National movements, nowadays, also subscribe to democracy by often couching citizenship in national terms. But could citizenship be comfortable wearing ethnic clothes? Political and civil rights did not exist because the nature of the communist system did not make provisions for them.

Political rights could not be exercised in a one-party system because people did not have the possibility to choose between different political parties, but were only able to vote for an approved list. As the only official ideology, communism did not leave sufficient scope for the expression of individual opinion, personal autonomy and freedom of speech. The system tried, often sucessfully, to base its legitimacy in defining and delivering social rights.

This needs to be broadened to include the involvement of individuals and groups in addressing as well as structuring the citizenship agenda.

This issue is usually understood as active and passive citizenship. It is also important to look at citizenship from the perspective of institutions and the way they function. Citizenship is a dynamic concept which depends on social change and its consequences on different levels of socio-political context. Furthemore, it clearly points out that there is a difference between the letter of the law and the reality of everyday life. Although it is important to analyse and become familiar with the letter of the law, it is even more important to analyse how the letter of the law is implemented and how it affects different social groups, such as national minorities.

The issue is whether the members of a community should be defined purely in terms of individuals or whether they should also be recognised as members of a group. Furthermore, collective rights as the only way to protect some ethnic groups has recently been put on the agenda, especially in the former Yugoslavia.

This issue has great relevance to the situation of the Poles, who are mostly concentrated in the south-east of Lithuania, and who demanded various forms of collective rights. Citizenship rights raise the issue of the treatment of different minority groups, among them national minorities.

Is it enough to guarantee Conceptual and Methodological Issues 7 equal rights to an individual, or is it also important to guarantee additional rights to groups? Iris Marion Young is concerned with disadvantaged groups primarily women and black Americans and their lack of capacity to assert their rights. She raises the question of how one can improve the means of expressing their rights. The answer is through establishing procedures to ensure additional representation of all disadvantaged groups.

Full participation of different groups is only possible through recognising rights for these different groups. Consequently, Kymlicka argues it is not sufficient to ensure that each single individual has a right to challenge any disadvantage, but the state has to recognise that it has a particular bias towards the majority culture. The state therefore has a duty to protect minority cultures, as well as the majority.

National minorities, together with Lithuanians, have been learning the importance of exercising their rights as individuals. In the early s they started to realise that individual rights alone were not sufficient; it was also necessary to acquire collective rights. Lithuanians claimed that Poles were already given sufficient rights in the form of cultural autonomy that acknowledged the right of each individual belonging to national minorities to be educated in their own language and provided state support for their educational, cultural and religious organisations. Their battle 8 Minorities and Citizenship, Lithuania, —93 was lost on ideological grounds.

However, the Lithuanian national movement did not want to concede any political control over Lithuanian territory, especially in light of the Polish occupation of the Vilnius region between the two World Wars. The issue of the Polish occupation of the Vilnius region will be discussed in Chapter 2. The major problem with this type of collective right is that it does not build bridges between the communities. It does not promote the co-existence of differences. However, one has to bear in mind that the rejection of self-government rights might possibly lead towards a movement for secession.

The state claims that it is also ready to support all these different institutions through its funds for culture and education. Some members of the national minorities claimed that a problem lay in the fact that the state supported the majority culture, and they therefore wanted a state guarantee that they would have the opportunity to maintain their culture. In other words, they did not want state support to depend on such factors as the number of people attending schools in a native language. They wanted their differences to be acknowledged through differential treatment. First, there was a proposal to define borders of electoral units along ethnic lines.

Second, some members of the Polish community argued that it was important not to introduce a threshold for any political party that specifically represented Poles in the Parliament. Therefore, from the point of view of political pragmatism, there is a rationale for Conceptual and Methodological Issues 9 them to be introduced. However, they are not compatible with the political aim of national movements and newly- independent states which is that of the political control of the whole territory. From the point of view of organising life in a community, acknowledging all the differences can lead towards a void where everything goes and where the community ceases to function effectively.

A much worse scenario is a struggle between different groups in the name of difference. Here, it is important to stress that difference does not mean that there are no shared attributes. It is precisely this point that enables David Harvey to claim that similarities are important, on the one hand, in defining differences and, on the other, as a basis for political alliances and solidarity.

John Keane rightly points out that a new concept of democracy is not simply representative democracy, but it represents a striving to be open-minded, uncompromisingly pluralist, cosmopolitan and historically informed. Democracy in complex societies requires conditions which enable individuals and social groups to affirm themselves and to be recognised for what they are or wish to be. That struggle takes place not only in state institutions but also involves non-state institutions.

Civil society is related to democracy and it is a place of pluralism, a place which allows different types of non-state activities to 10 Minorities and Citizenship, Lithuania, —93 blossom. Furthermore, civil society has to evaluate the transparency and accountability of the state, the market and their institutions. Finally, the functioning of a civil society should not prevent the state from fulfilling its role.

As argued in the second part of this book, they were not satisfied with some of their rights. Therefore, they started to form different types of organisations to be able to challenge the Lithuanian legislation. They needed an independent space to learn to formulate their needs and the state had to learn to guarantee that space.

In the case of Lithuania, the power relations influenced Lithuanian civil society and as a result the national agenda dominated this space. In Eastern Europe the very idea of civil society meant exclusion from the state influence. Two issues are of interest to us.

One is connected with the statement that civil society was founded upon national consciousness and the other discusses democracy as the only viable solution for Eastern Europe. Civil society did not exist in the former Soviet Union because, as an intrinsic aspect of the system, the state could not guarantee an independent and public space. Opposition groups challenged the existing order but their opinions were silenced by the government.

Even if we cannot acknowledge the existence of civil society we still have to take into account that elements for its existence were there; people who were prepared to challenge the state and society in which they lived. Glasnost a policy introduced from above entailed the opportunity to go a step further and allow for the possibility of forming a space in which social movements would be able to exist. However, it has to be Conceptual and Methodological Issues 11 recognised that glasnost did not financially support social movements. Furthermore, the Communist Party supported socialist views which did not undermine the existence of communism.

Environmental activists called the Lithuanian population to protect Lithuanian soil and nature which symbolise the Lithuanian nation. As already stated, the environment was seen in natural terms as well as in national terms. Ideas around nationhood and statehood infused movements which were given, though not guaranteed, a space to challenge the state on non-political issues. Glasnost therefore strengthened the agenda of civil society but, at the same time, nationalised it. As a result civil society which, in theory, should be open to each individual was shaped by anti-Soviet and Lithuanian national ideologies.

Nijole Lomaniene argues that social reality turned into a highly ritualised space. In the West there has been a constant dialogue between political scientists who defend and those who oppose liberal democracy. We should also agree with Bobbio that the struggle for democracy is the struggle against autocratic power in all forms. I see democracy as a political system which acknowledges the following principles: plurality, difference and heterogeneity. If the state is based upon these principles this means that it is ready to acknowledge differences in everyday life, in our case differences among national minorities and the majority, as well as differences within the majority and national minorities.

This also means that the state is able to guarantee an independent space in which civil society can function. Democracy is the only political system which is able to face up to conflicts. Civil society is also important because of its influence on the state and its institutions as well as on the market and its institutions. Influence is the critical tool of civil society. Civil society does not have any formal power, although its influence can change power relations.

Formal power lies mostly with the state. Civil society should also be seen as a mechanism outside the official channels, which can evaluate the transparency and accountability of state and market institutions. I would agree with Jean Cohen, that it is important to highlight that civil society should be seen not only in relation to the state but also to the economy. That model, in its different variations, was implemented in Eastern Europe and also in Lithuania.

In Lithuania it definitely did not encourage solidarity, social justice and autonomy.

National Minorities and Citizenship Rights in Lithuania, 1988-93

In conjunction with nationalism, sponsored by the state, it fuelled hatred, especially against Russians. Therefore, it is important to analyse how a national movement relates to proposals for equal citizenship, political democratisation, social justice, respect towards different types of groups, including national minorities.

Nationalism and national movements Different theories of nationalism share an understanding of the importance of self-governance or independence. Memory is oriented towards the past but its main purpose is to enter Conceptual and Methodological Issues 13 into the present and future. Language of the majority nation within a state is a vital ethnic marker which distinguishes us from them. Equality is a civic marker and the result of the commitment to democracy.

However, this commitment like the other two issues can have boundaries. Language is often defined in relation to the language of the other or others. Equality relates to respecting an individual as a member of a community but the community could be defined in ethnic terms. Even when it is legally defined in civic terms the lack of democratic political culture can hinder the implementation of the letter of the law.

For a national movement to be successful, the following processes should take place: a crisis of legitimacy linked to social, moral and cultural strains, vertical social mobility among a non-dominant ethnic group, a high level of social communication including literacy, schooling and market relations and nationally relevant conflict of interests. It attracted people and movements with different agendas who were ready to give up their immediate concerns in the struggle for Lithuanian independence.

Therefore, for the purposes of our analysis, I would argue that there are two important issues. First, the relationship of ethnic groups towards the state and, second, their effort to reorganise that state. Ethnic groups see themselves as being culturally distinct from other groups within the same state. They also argue that their distinctiveness is not acknowledged. Therefore, they demand that the state needs to be reorganised along the lines of cultural autonomy which could lead towards federation, confederation and even towards secession, in the case where ethnic groups live in a compact territory.

In the case of Lithuania, Sajudis claimed that 14 Minorities and Citizenship, Lithuania, —93 Lithuanian identity was suppressed during the Soviet era. The movement looked for the support of the national minorities of Lithuania, and was indeed given support by some members of these communities. In Eastern Europe the aim of the majority of nationalist movements was a nation-state.

Nation-state is not only a territorial organisation with defined and fixed boundaries but it is also a membership organisation. Individuals saw themselves or were forced to see themselves as Lithuanian, Polish, Russian, etc. Citizens of Lithuania were guaranteed equal rights but citizenship is not only, as argued above, about rights. While important to begin with, citizenship is a dynamic principle that should entail learning to live with differences and provide for them.

Citizenship needs institutional support which teaches tolerance towards different cultures. This institutional support did not always exist in Lithuania. Citizenship became the most important political issue with the re-establishment of state independence. It is seen as an aim which could be best reached through collective action, action in which all members of society, whatever their nationality, have to take part.

Citizenship is politically determined because the state decides who may or may not be a citizen. However, this decision does not always have a democratic base and excludes people according to their race, ethnicity, religion, etc. I am primarily interested in this tension between citizenship as an inclusive principle and nationalism as an exclusive one. Citizenship needs democratic Conceptual and Methodological Issues 15 institutions in order to function effectively. Nationalism does not need to deny it.

Methodological issues My methodology was very much coloured by the acknowledgement of the importance of the intelligentsia in the forging of national consciousness. Miroslav Hroch points out that the intelligentsia played a vital role in the nineteenth century during the period of national awakening, an important part of which was the struggle against Polonisation and Russification.

After the Second World War, the Lithuanian intelligentsia highlighted the importance of belonging to a national community as a means of combating the policies of Russification and Sovietisation. The majority of Russians came to Lithuania after the Second World War through the policies of industrialisation. They were encouraged by the State to migrate, in keeping with the ideal of the merging sliianie of Soviet nations. The events of came as a surprise to the majority of Russians and forced them to consider who they were. The intelligentsia of all three minorities were engaged in a process of defining what it meant to be a Russian, a Pole and a Jew.

Furthermore, my interviews tended to focus on the intelligentsia in light of their significance in contributing to the debates over minority rights. Their answers were complex and varied in accordance to their perception of the present situation and future prospects for their community in Lithuania. I first visited Lithuania in October and then again in May I was, therefore, able to interview some respondents twice and also had a chance to meet new respondents.

The mass media and politicians claimed that national minorities voted for the LDDP. According to my interviews, national minorities were divided on the issue of whether the LDDP would engage in minority issues.

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Therefore, when I returned in May it was important to discuss policies which the new government had introduced towards national minorities. It proved valuable interviewing some people twice because they were able to analyse 16 Minorities and Citizenship, Lithuania, —93 their experience of how the new government had dealt with minority issues. This factor had a vital influence on my decision to focus on the intelligentsia in my sample.

The first type of sample, the purposive sample, is used in a situation where a selection of people who are to be interviewed is made according to a known characteristic. In my case it enabled me to target specific groups who were policy-makers and policy-takers. Because I went to Lithuania for the first time in October and had minimal pre-existing contacts, I also had to rely on the snowball method as a means of meeting people to interview them. Both these methods, purposive and snowball, helped me to meet more of the people who belonged to the intelligentsia.

I wanted primarily to interview people who influenced and shaped policies on national minorities, which involved interviewing a wide range of people; from actors and poets to politicians both in government and opposition. The main problem with a purposive sample is that it targets a very specific group whose views may not be representative.

The main problem with the snowball sample is that it may lead a researcher to collect data which belong to a particular perspective. In October I visited the Department of National Minorities in Vilnius where I was given the names of different organisations formed by national minorities. I was immediately warned that there was no up-to-date address book of all organisations because they were formed, and sometimes disappeared, very quickly. I visited the majority of them and talked to those members who were willing either to express their opinion or discuss issues concerning their ethnic group.

I tried especially to meet members of national minorities through their various organisations such as, for example, at an exhibition at the Russian Cultural Centre or during the interval of the performance of Majstor i Margarita in the Russian Theatre. I also interviewed all the MPs belonging to minority groups except for one, Emanuelis Zingeris,46 as well as politicians who were engaged Conceptual and Methodological Issues 17 in minority issues, and presidents or members of different committees in the period to Furthermore, I interviewed two people who were in charge of the Parliamentary Committee which dealt with the issue of Polish autonomy in the period —2.

Being in the Parliament in the first days after the October elections, I talked to but did not always interview many MPs to get their views on national minorities issues. Members of different political parties proved a valuable source of information and opinion not only about national minorities, but also about the history of the opposition movement in Lithuania as well as of Sajudis. It was also important to interview people who played a vital role in the period to but who had withdrawn from the public scene as for example the former members of Sajudis.

They were of both Russian and Lithuanian origins. The majority of them did not withdraw exclusively because of the treatment of national minorities. At the University of Vilnius I met social scientists, lawyers, historians who were not only a valuable source of information but also found time to discuss issues which were on my agenda. I was also invited to three conferences, two on the Russians and one on the Poles.

There I met social scientists and historians from Belarus, Germany, Poland, Scandinavia and the three Baltic states who had been engaged in issues concerning national movements in the Baltic region as well as in the states of the former Soviet Union. Although I targeted the intelligentsia non-Lithuanians and Lithuanians I was ready to talk to anyone who was prepared to talk to me. I wanted to hear as many different opinions as possible.

They were not always different but they were important in getting to know the atmosphere in which national minorities lived, which issues they raised and those they did not and why. The interviews varied in length from one hour to six hours. They also took place in different places, from offices to restaurants or cafes, kitchens and park benches.

My interviews were organised around a semi-structured questionnaire. This enables the interviewer to have more latitude to probe beyond the answers and thus enter into a dialogue with the interviewer. I followed newspapers in Russian, Polish, Lithuanian and English as well as radio and television programmes in Russian and Lithuanian. Finally, I kept a diary. It proved to be of enormous importance once I was writing the book.

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It helped me to recall certain events and conversations as well as my first impressions about them. It enabled me to relive my days in Lithuania. Structure of the book This book is divided in two parts. The first part Chapters 1— 4 addresses the historical background to the issue of national minorities and their rights in the independent Lithuania between the two World Wars.

It continues with an analysis of the rise of Lithuanian nationalism during the Soviet era and the Lithuanian national movement, Sajudis. It finishes with an analysis of the Lithuanian legislation concerning national minorities. The second part Chapters 5—9 of the book is an analysis of the case study which took place in autumn and winter and spring and summer In Chapter 1, I raise theoretical questions in relation to the more general literature, concerning citizenship rights, nationalism and national minorities.

This enables me to explore more generally the tension between citizenship as an inclusive principle and nationalism as an exclusive principle, and its consequences for national minorities. It argues that democracy means learning to live with plurality, heterogeneity and difference. Chapter 2 addresses the issues regarding the changing position of national minorities in Lithuania between the two World Wars — The chapter concentrates, first, on the legacy of the Peace Conference —20 , primarily with regard to minority treaties. Then I analyse the Jews as the largest national minority in the political, social and economic context of Lithuania.

The Jews are analysed as an Conceptual and Methodological Issues 19 example of the treatment of Lithuanian national minorities in this period. This is an important issue because inter-war Lithuania is viewed by contemporary Lithuanians as providing a fund of democratic traditions from which the contemporary state can draw. Chapter 3 analyses the rise of the Lithuanian contemporary dissident and national movements. The chapter begins with an analysis of dissent in the Soviet period, especially during the leadership of Khrushchev and Brezhnev.

In the second part, the focus moves to the rise of Sajudis and the split within the Communist Party of the Soviet Socialist Republic of Lithuania. This chapter briefly introduces the differences within respective national minorities in relation to the agenda put forward by the Lithuanian national movement. It explores the approaches of national minorities to the legislation and highlights the issues which the national minorities considered to be vital for the evolution of democracy. A concluding section also considers the opinions of Lithuanian politicians towards this legislation.

Chapter 5 is an introduction to the second part of the book which highlights how citizenship issues have been intervowen with a search for national identity. Chapters 6 to 8 focus on national minorities in the post state, the way they perceived the new state and their rights, and also how their rights compared to the late s. First, the situation of Russians is explored taking account of their paradoxical position as being the largest nationality in the Soviet Union, and now a minority in independent Lithuania.

Their responses towards issues raised by the Lithuanian national movement are further analysed. Russians, at the beginning of the s, were oriented towards their own community. Only a minority of them tried to promote Russian cultural organisations within the Lithuanian context.

In comparison with the Poles, the majority of Russians had not been keen to set up a Russian political party. The Poles as an indigenous population in the South-East, started immediately after independence to put demands to the new Lithuanian Parliament. They had been especially concerned with issues concerning land reform and local government in the South-East. For the Jews the Holocaust was the most important issue, as already pointed out, and proved to be vital in their decision to stay or leave Lithuania.

A postscript summarises and analyses my research findings, and briefly explores developments concerning national minorities since August First, the newly independent Lithuania claims to be continuing the democratic tradition from the inter-war period. We need to evaluate this alleged democratic tradition in terms of its approach towards national minorities.

Second, we need to understand the important role which not only democratic tradition but also national rhetoric had in influencing what happened in Lithuania in the inter-war period. These objectives are particularly important because the inter-war period has great emotional significance in contemporary Lithuania and plays a crucial part in national history. Memory of this period does not only entail perceiving it as a golden age but also has its territorial dimension of where the boundaries of a Lithuanian state are. In this chapter it is argued that the League of Nations and the Minority Declaration played an important role in the political life of Lithuania in this period.

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The acknowledgement of Lithuanian independence was tied up with the Minority Declaration of the League of Nations. Lithuania agreed to implement the Minority Declaration in the hope that it would help her to regain the Vilnius region. The Constitution, the first Lithuanian constitution, did not address national autonomy. The memory of the Holocaust is the most important marker for the Lithuanian Jewish community and the most contentious issue between the community and the Lithuanian state.

Minority treaties and declarations3 The birth of national movements in the nineteenth century, through such processes as national awakening, liberation and consolidation threatened the existing empires. The basis of this threat had a democratic background. It was based upon the rights of peoples, primarily the right of self-determination. With the collapse of empires during the First World War and following the discussions around the Peace Treaties, self-determination was no longer understood in terms of the free will to decide in which state to live but was instead identified with nationality.

One important feature of this process was that boundaries were drawn without fully acknowledging that state and ethnic boundaries do not necessarily coincide. The independence of Lithuania was won by the people of Lithuania, but her borders with both Poland and Germany were decided by the Allied and Associated Powers, in both cases by force. The Supreme Council of the League of Nations first laid down a border with Poland on 8 December which followed ethnographic lines as closely as possible, the so-called Curzon line.

However, this was later revised when Polish forces, under the leadership of General Zeligowski, seized disputed territory, the centre of which was Vilnius, on 9 October see Map 2. The League came to accept this coup de main and recognised Polish possession of the territory. With regard to the German—Lithuanian frontier, the Peace Conference —20 forced Germany to renounce her sovereignty over a strip on the right bank of the Niemen, including the port of Memel-Klaipeda see Map 2. The motivation for this decision was mainly economic, as Lithuania would have found it difficult to exist without this port.

The Powers administered the port and the district themselves for some time. On 10 January Lithuania seized Memel by a coup de main and the Powers eventually assigned the district to Lithuanian sovereignty, but as an autonomous area with a statute guaranteed by the Principal Allied and Associated Powers. Nemuna R Sakiai.

Vilnius region : taken from Lithuania by Poland , returned to Lithuania 0 km Map 2. On 12 July the Soviet regime recognised the independence of Lithuania and on the same day the Treaty of Moscow was signed which settled the Lithuanian—Soviet border. During the First World War the issue of national minorities was overshadowed by the question of national self-determination. At the time there was a bitter discussion taking place about a draft of the Covenant of the League of Nations. In the original draft there was no mention whatsoever of national minorities.

It was implicit that the minorities should either assimilate or move to their national states. It is also of interest to us because of the dispute between Poland and Lithuania and consequently the way both states treated their respective minorities. It also argued that the School Article12 and the two Jewish Articles13 could not be a part of the fundamental laws which could only cover rights of all citizens and the general principles of liberty and equality. Paderewski, the Polish representative at the Conference, encapsulated the atmosphere and language of the Peace Conference.

It is certain that the Jews, basing themselves on precedent established, will claim elsewhere the national principles which they would enjoy in Poland. He also pointed out that under the new system of international relations the guarantor was the League not the Powers. In the light of the Polish complaints about the first draft of the Treaty discussed above, the Polish government could not have been appeased by this letter although under pressure from the Powers, it signed the Treaty on 28 June The Second Assembly of the League declared on 23 September that Lithuania together with Latvia and Estonia was ready to join the League which meant that it had enforced the principles of the Minority Treaty and was prepared to negotiate minority obligations with the Council.

In regard to the Vilnius question, it has to be pointed out that the Lithuanian government had kept these two issues separate. Despite being dissatisfied with the way the League of Nations dealt with the Vilnius question, it went ahead with the Declaration on Minority Rights. It is possible that they hoped that a give-and-take strategy would prove fruitful, that not causing difficulties would be rewarded, or that once Lithuania was a member of the League it would be easier to lobby support for the return of Vilnius.

Slavic , Literary studies , and Historical Studies. Local governance and social cohesion in Ukraine more. The research has investigated the relationship between institutional reform and economic growth in the European Neighbourhood Policy ENP countries, and the extent to which formal and informal institutions have converged towards EU The research has investigated the relationship between institutional reform and economic growth in the European Neighbourhood Policy ENP countries, and the extent to which formal and informal institutions have converged towards EU norms.

Several key conclusions emerge from the analysis. Firstly, the ENP countries show a weaker institutional convergence to the EU than candidate countries. Secondly, political stability, governmental accountability, freedom of media and control of corruption are important for the success of economic policies. However, nominal adoption or transposition of EU norms and rules does not guarantee successful institutional performance as the continuing problems in Bulgaria and Romania demonstrate. Thirdly, although Ukraine and Moldova have shown considerable progress over the last eight years, they lag behind others in creating a stable rule of law, political and economic freedom, respect for minorities and free media and are still considered as only partly free societies with respect to political and civil liberties.

The convergence target is not yet reached and the final outcome is far from certain. In sum, the process of institutional reform is incomplete due to an absence of a clear European perspective. Fifthly, in the ENP countries changes in the complementarity of institutional reform are positively related to growth, and changes in reform level and reform complementarity have a greater effect on growth than in other regions. A corollary is that reforms that reduce institutional complementarity are likely to have a significant negative impact on economic growth.

In Ukraine and Moldova the consequence is an increase in corruption and in political instability. The change in formal institutions brought about by reforms should therefore not be allowed to outpace the slower change in informal institutions. Reforms should therefore focus as much on informal institutions as on formal institutions.

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The leaders of an internally weak empire are not likely to acquiesce to an erosion of their power.